Supermarket chain Spar Austria adopts renewable diesel in 5 regions
Spar Austria is moving toward its sustainable mobility goals with an intermediate step of switching to biobased fuel powering its vehicles.
As part of an ambitious commitment to power its logistic operations with renewable energy sources by 2050, Spar Austria looks at greenhouse-gas emissions incurred in local transportation.
Of around 300 trucks supplying Spar stores across Austria, over 50 percent of these have been refueled with hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO), also referred to as renewable diesel, since mid-September.
This fuel is made from used cooking oil and is considered a renewable low-carbon substitute for diesel.
The transition to this fuel can be done seamlessly with the same trucks continuing to deliver products to 1,500 Spar stores in Austria.
To date, the provinces of Vienna, Lower Austria, Burgenland, Styria, and Carinthia are using this source, with other regions to follow.
“Spar Austria confirmed a reluctance in the past to use this fuel source due to plant-based oils, such as rapeseed, soybean or palm oil, potentially competing with other crops for land use during the fuel-production process,” the company stated.
Marcus Wild, a Spar Austria board member, underscored that as a food retailer there is a definitive answer to the “plate or tank” dilemma.
“Food belongs on the plate,” he said.
Ensuring the HVO fuel is 100 percent certified and obtained from used cooking oils and residues containing no palm oil was a key factor for Spar Austria to adopt this fuel in its vehicles.
Spar Austria indicated that although the fuel being sourced is 100 percent biobased, it still causes emissions during refinery and fuel-transportation stages.
However, up to 90 percent of emissions can be avoided when compared to using fossil diesel.
It is estimated that switching to biobased fuel will save around 10,000 tons of CO2 per year in the first five provinces using this source, with up to 17,000 tons potentially saved if rolled out throughout Austria.